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We are just on our way home after staying at Freycinet Lodge and visiting Freycinet National Park and I really want to share our experience with you. Prior to our trip, I was searching for information about travelling to the national park and specifically doing the Wineglass Bay lookout walk with two kids under 3 and I couldn’t find much. So I am hoping this blog post may help out a few other people like us.
Plus if you love wine and travel, then this post may also provide you a few ideas for your bucket list. Doing this trip sans kids would be just as spectacular but in a slightly different way 😉
If you’re not a regular reader of my blog, then you may not know that we moved to Tasmania in late 2022 to live. We fell in love with the most southerly state of Australia on a visit to see a lot of the Tasmania Wineries in 2019.
Fast forward to 3 years down the track, we now have two children (our son is almost three and our daughter almost one) and we run our own business (Grand Cru Digital – an SEO and Google Ads business). So we thought we’d bite the bullet and make the move.
In 2019 when we visited, I was so desperate to do the Wineglass Bay lookout walk, however after driving around the carpark for an hour or so, we ended up just leaving. It was so packed, which I guess is to be expected over the Easter holidays.
Therefore, for my 30-something birthday this year, I suggested to Mr Spittoon that we do it. Yes it was probably going to be a mission with the kids, but let’s give it a go. Our backup plan was that I’d do the walk by myself if needed.
We’re living about a 2.5 hour drive from Freycinet National Park, so we thought a couple of nights away would be the best way to do it. So we packed up the car, potty and all (yes we’re also in the middle of toilet training our toddler!) and hit the road.
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After looking into Airbnb’s and various accommodation options, we decided to stay at Freycinet Lodge. The lodge is actually in Freycinet National Park which meant it was only going to be a 6 minute drive to the start of the Wineglass Bay walk and hence making the ‘outing’ less full on for the kiddies.
As the lodge is in the National Park it also means you need to have your National Park Pass to stay there. We bought an annual pass on our way up that day as we are hoping to visit a few more national parks over the year.
The lodge has what looks like some amazing rooms for couples. I was definitely a bit jealous! However they do cater for families with their Family Cabins which include a lovely comfy king bed in the main lounge room and then there is a second room with two single beds. Our toddler is used to sleeping in a ‘big boy bed’ so this suited us and then we requested a porta cot for our youngest.
The cabins also have a little kitchenette with not horrible wine glasses. In fact they had flutes alongside white and red glasses which I was impressed with. There’s a fridge to chill down your vino and the cabin also came with a small jug of milk, fresh water and a lovely bottle of Devils Corner Sparkling Wine and some complimentary chocolates too. A lovely touch and treat for mum and dad once the kids were down for the night!
The bathrooms in the cabins are nice and big with a lovely shower with good pressure. This was definitely a highlight for me. Especially because we are on tank water at our house, so showers tend to be short.
There are also things like an iron, ironing board, safe, tv’s in both rooms, microwave, stove top, etc. The WIFI is a bit patchy, but it’s all you need in amongst the lovely bush life.
My only big fault with the cabin was that floor in our cabin was pretty dirty. By the end of our first afternoon, our feet were nearly black from walking on it. They are also super dated and, in my opinion, could do with a refurb (especially when you are paying about $600 per night). Saying that, the location is worth it and we would go back again.
Breakfast at The Bay Restaurant
A lovely little piece of luxury included in our stay was an a la carte breakfast at the onsite The Bay Restaurant at the main reception area of the lodge. The restaurant overlooks Richardson Beach and Great Oyster Bay, with the Hazards as a backdrop. It is oh so pretty. I really wanted to get down one afternoon for a wine to soak in the views but alas we didn’t quite make it.
However, breakfast was lovely. On my birthday, Mr Spittoon and I even opted to pay for a sneaky glass of Arras Sparkling Wine to kick off my day. The staff asked us to pay for these before we even received them, which I found a bit weird, maybe they were making sure we were good for it ????
They provided a high chair which was great. We brought food with us for our little one and we ordered the scrambled eggs on toast for our toddler (to be honest the baby probably ate more of it than he did!). There is no kids menu for breakfast, so if you don’t think your kids will eat anything off the menu, definitely take something with you.
With breakfast, you choose one item off the menu and can also have coffee/tea and fresh juice.
Wineglass Bay Lookout Walk with two kids under three
Mr. Spittoon and I aren’t the fittest people on the planet and we already knew I’d be carrying our 9kg baby in our ErgoBaby backpack and our toddler would probably only walk part of the walk. So we were a bit aphrenrsive as to whether we were even going to be able to do the walk.
We packed treats in a backpack, water, sunscreen, mozzie repellent (which we ended up buying from the lodge as we forgot to bring our BuzzPatch Mosquito Stickers!), and all the key things you’d need on an uphill walk. My Apple Watch recorded the full walk as a total of 4kms which ended up taking us 2.5 hours.
We made it! There were a few tough moments with the toddler, but in the end we got to the top and everyone was smiling. In my opinion it was worth those tough moments as the views of Wineglass Bay really are spectacular. And we saw a wallaby which made the trip for our toddler!
Funnily enough I actually think many people who weren’t carrying kids actually struggled more than us. I actually found it not bad, we were going at a slow pace which probably made it easier. They say it’s normally about a 1.5hour round trip walk.
My top tips for doing the walk with young kids are;
- A decent baby carrier on your back, I have to admit I love my ErgoBaby carrier however it’s more an ‘around town’ baby carrier. I was definitely jealous of those with proper hiking baby carriers from brands like Deuter (definitely on my wish list!)
- Plan for lots of stops – which is easy to do on this particular walk as there are tons of little purpose-built seats along the way
- Go early in the morning when it’s less hot and there’s less people. I don’t know about you, but I find dealing with toddler meltdowns is a lot easier when there are less people around
Everyone we bumped into on the track was super friendly and gave our toddler so many encouraging words which I thought was really cool.
After the walk we went back to our cabin at the lodge for naps before we did another couple of walks, see below.
Cape Tourville Lighthouse Walk
Our toddler is slightly obsessed with The Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch book by Ronda Armitage, which meant the Cape Tourville Lighthouse Walk was an easy sell. The walk is super easy, 20 minutes (we did it in just over 25 minutes) and is a grand total of about 600 metres.
The views are spectacular, the lighthouse is great for the kids and there’s also a set of binoculars which our toddler loved.
The drive from the lodge to the start of the walk is only about 10 minutes. Definitely one to add to the list!
If you’re staying at the lodge, then there is track from within the lodge grounds to Honeymoon Bay which makes it very easy to get to with kids. The Bay is pretty spectacular, and our toddler absolutely loved mucking around in the water and on the beach. In fact, we had to pull out all the bribes to get him to leave!
Mr Spittoon and I would have loved to take a couple of glasses and a nice bottle of Tassie wine down to enjoy on the rocks and take in the amazing scenery – maybe next time!
There are also a ton of Freycinet National Park tours you can do in the area. I’d be quite keen to take the kids on one of the Wineglass Bay boat tours next time.
All up, we really did have a great time as a young family at Freycinet National Park and I would recommend it for both those with and without kids. And if you do have young kids like us – do it! It’s totally doable with toddlers and babies.
And please if you have any questions, do drop a comment below and I’ll get back to you soon!